Matt Arnold (matt_arnold) wrote in lojban,
Matt Arnold
matt_arnold
lojban

This Blog On The Lojban Homepage

For a long time I've hoped to make the Lojban homepage display an online digest of the blogs and other output of the Lojban community. My local Lojban group usually produces something postable and interesting every couple of weeks or so, and there are also blogs in and about Lojban which I could reproduce with copy-and-paste, as well as a lot of Nicholas Gurewitch cartoons I've translated, and of course the jbocradi podcast when I get it started again.

The ideal solution would be to embed this Lojban Livejournal community (the one you're reading now) onto the homepage. Currently it's so out-of-the-way it's unlikely to be found by many people. We also have a lot of tiny blogs and podcasts languishing completely unseen. I subscribe to all of them, and would love to take responsibility for either syndicating them to one main blog, or copying and pasting posts from them into this blog on a regular basis.

The top page of the main domain needs a main consolidated blog, to show newcomers that we have an active community, to show oldcomers that activity hasn't died, to show nevercomers that they should have this as a topic at their science fiction conventions or academic conlang conferences, to introduce us to each other, and to get all the neat output of Lojban on display in one digest. I don't believe there is a more important welcome wagon.

I know Javascript doesn't work in the type of wiki we use. Other methods of embedding are found on this page. camgusmis is currently working on getting this to work.

I'd like to get your input. What do you think? If this were mirrored on the Lojban home page, would you post here more often?

The important thing is that it should be seen immediately just by typing or clicking www.lojban.org in a browser. One of the most important usability and friendliness principles of the web is the incredible preciousness of click-thru.

Our topic is not something people tend to be looking for, or feeling that they crave and need, if you know what I mean. A website where somebody goes because they're looking to buy entertainment or products they crave, or they're researching medical data on their wife's sickness, can get away with burying things under more levels of clicks than we can because the audience is driven.

Also, at first glance Lojban can seem like the boring kind of weird. We need to be the fun kind of weird, and I don't think our showroom window currently projects the cool-nerd, bloggable sort of eccentricity. That is the sort of meme that attracted seven people to the Lojban group which meets in my home (we added a new member this month). That is the sort of meme that gets science fiction conventions asking for a presentation about Lojban.

Inclusion on the forums page, reachable by one click, is still buried too far under a homepage that doesn't confront these two obstacle misperceptions. For us, it's far more difficult to get people to click even once. First impression is vital.

I understand that people who are not interested enough to click even once are unlikely to learn this language. I have no illusion about that. But they'll tell their geekiest friends. And by putting up blog posts of Lojban translations of various geeky webcomics and internet songs (with their creator's permission of course), we'll be pimping the original versions of their creations to our audience. And one thing is for sure, they appreciate it, and eventually some of them pimp you back to their own audiences.

If we can get this blog on the homepage as I described, I could definitely make a print publication from it without a lot more work!
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